23 Mar. Mark 11:12-14,20-24

23 Mar. Why did Jesus curse a fig tree?

"The next day, as Jesus was leaving Bethany, he became hungry. Seeing a fig tree in leaf from far away, he went to see if it had any figs on it. But he found no figs, only leaves, because it was not the right season for figs."

"So Jesus said to the tree, 'May no one ever eat fruit from you again.' And Jesus's followers heard him say this..."

"The next morning as Jesus was passing by with his followers, they saw the fig tree dry and dead, even to the roots. Peter remembered the tree and said to Jesus, 'Teacher, look! The fig tree you cursed is dry and dead.'"

"Jesus answered, 'Have faith in God. I tell you the truth, you can say to this mountain, "Go, fall into the sea." And if you have no doubts in your mind and believe that what you say will happen, God will do it for you.'"

"So I tell you to believe that you have received the things you ask for in prayer, and God will give them to you."

          (Mark 11:12-14 & 20-24)

 

 

Had Jesus forgotten to eat his Wheatybix for breakfast??

Was Jesus a bit uppity because there were no donkeys available at Bethany rent-a-donkey, so he had to WALK into Jerusalem??

Had he got his Spring and Summer seasons mixed up??

Why on earth did Jesus talk to a tree??

 

Well, no one can say that the Bible isn't fascinating! Let's look a little closer...

 

The morning after Jesus's 'triumphal' entry into Jerusalem (i.e. the Monday morning of what we now call 'Holy Week') Jesus and his followers returned to Jerusalem. On the way, Jesus was hungry and tried to find some fruit on a fig tree. (Fig trees were common alongside roads and houses where they provided shade from the hot sun.)

The tree was covered in leaves as the new growth was flourishing during the warmer spring days leading up to the Passover festival. Jesus expected to find green (unripe) figs. But when he looked in amongst the leaves, he couldn't find a single new fruit growing. There were no signs of new fruits springing up – so he condemned the tree as useless!

Jesus saw the fig tree as a parable representing the Jewish leaders. They, like the tree, made a fine outward show; but they failed to bear the fruit of righteous living in their lives. So, like the tree, they were condemned to destruction (see Luke 13:6-9 & Hosea 9:10).

When Jesus and his disciples passed the tree the next day, it had withered and died. Peter and the other disciples were amazed. But Jesus told them that they would see far more amazing things than this during the coming week, and when they learned to pray with greater faith about accomplishing difficult deeds.

The photo shows an illustration of common figs from 'Plantae selectae' vol. 8. t. 73 by C.J.Trew (1771).

You can read more about Jesus in Jerusalem during the week leading up to Passover in 30AD @ https://www.thebiblejourney.org/…/jesus-heralds-the-end-of…/


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